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February 2012 Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico Rose 17.4 Percent from February 2011

February 2012 Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico Rose 17.4 Percent from February 2011

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North American Surface Trade, Five Years: March 2007-February 2012 (Figure 1)

Table Version | Excel | CSV

North American Surface Trade, Five Years: March 2007-February 2012 (Figure 1).

Tuesday, May 1, 2012 - Trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American neighbors, Canada and Mexico, was 17.4 percent higher in February 2012 than in February 2011, totaling $78.1 billion (Table 1), according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

BTS, a part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that the February 2012 value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico, the United States North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners, rose 12.6 percent from February 2008, which was two months after the start of the recession, and 63.0 percent from February 2009, in the middle of the recession (Table 3).

The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico in February increased by 87.3 percent compared to February 2002, a period of 10 years. Imports in February were up 75.9 percent since February 2002, while exports were up 102.8 percent (Table 3). See Transborder Press Releases for historical data.

Surface transportation includes freight movements by truck, rail, pipeline, mail, Foreign Trade Zones, and other. In February, 87.4 percent of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moved via land, 8.7 percent moved by vessel, and 3.9 percent moved by air (Figure 2).

North American Surface Freight by Mode, February 2012 (Figure 2)

Table Version | Excel | CSV

Figure 2: North American Surface Freight by Mode, February 2012.

The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico increased 3.4 percent in February 2012 from January 2012 (Table 2). Month-to-month changes can be affected by seasonal variations and other factors.

U.S.-Canada and U.S.-Mexico surface transportation trade in February 2012 both increased compared to February 2011 with U.S.-Canada reaching $45.4 billion, a 13.7 percent increase, and U.S.-Mexico reaching $32.7 billion, a 23.0 percent increase. For trade statistics by mode, see Table 4 for Canada and Table 6 for Mexico.

In February trade by state, Michigan led all states in surface trade with Canada as it has in previous years, at $5.9 billion, an 18.2 percent increase from February 2011 (Table 5). Of the top 10 states by value, Illinois had the largest percentage increase over February 2011, at 30.1 percent. About half of the $5.1 billion in Illinois-Canada trade was imports of oil and gas via pipeline.

The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Canada by surface modes of transportation in February was vehicles (other than railway), valued at $8.7 billion (Table 8).

Texas also continued to lead all states in surface trade with Mexico at $11.7 billion, a 29.3 percent increase from February 2011 (Table 7). February 2012 was the second highest month on record for TexasMexico surface trade, which peaked in August 2011 at $11.9 billion. Of the top 10 states by value, Tennessee had the biggest percentage increase, 32.5 percent. Of the $725 million in TennesseeMexico trade, $203 million was in computer related machinery and parts. The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Mexico by surface modes of transportation in February was electrical machinery with $6.6 billion in trade (Table 9).

For more information, see Transborder Press Releases for previous press releases and summary tables. See TransBorder Freight Data for data from previous months, and individual state data. BTS has scheduled release of March TransBorder numbers for May 29.

Table 1. Value of Monthly U.S. Surface Transportation Trade with Canada and Mexico

(millions of dollars)

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Month 2010 2011 2012 Percent Change 2010-2011 Percent Change 2011-2012
January 56,697 67,734 75,534 19.5 11.5
February 59,492 66,534 78,135 11.8 17.4
March 69,943 80,822   15.6  
April 65,831 73,767   12.1  
May 66,805 77,318   15.7  
June 69,859 77,521   11.0  
July 61,260 72,363   18.1  
August 67,964 80,406   18.3  
September 68,324 77,725   13.8  
October 70,565 79,040   12.0  
November 68,060 76,672   12.7  
December 66,530 74,230   11.6  
Year-to-date 116,189 134,268 153,669 15.6 14.4
Annual 791,329 904,133   14.3  

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

NOTE: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding.  Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 2. U.S. Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico by Surface Modes of Transportation

(millions of dollars)

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Mode   February 2011 January 2012 February 2012 Percent Change January 2012 - February 2012 Percent Change February 2011 - 2012
All Surface Modes Imports 36,277 40,953 42,198 3.0 16.3
Exports 30,257 34,581 35,937 3.9 18.8
Total 66,534 75,534 78,135 3.4 17.4
Truck Imports 22,307 25,280 26,087 3.2 16.9
Exports 23,527 26,866 27,491 2.3 16.8
Rail Imports 7,252 7,754 8,668 11.8 19.5
Exports 3,748 4,562 4,751 4.1 26.7
Pipeline Imports 5,554 6,720 6,032 -10.2 8.6
Exports 711 710 1,144 61.2 60.7

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

NOTES: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding.   Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.  The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, and other transportation.  For additional detail, please refer to the "Data Fields" section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html

Table 3. February 2012 Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico Compared with February of Prior Years

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Compared to February in... Percent Change
Imports Exports Total Surface Trade
2011 16.3 18.8 17.4
2010 29.7 33.4 31.3
2009 64.9 60.8 63.0
2008 6.7 20.3 12.6
2007 24.2 39.9 31.0
2006 22.0 42.6 30.7
2005 36.8 58.0 45.8
2004 51.6 76.8 62.2
2003 66.0 95.2 78.2
2002 75.9 102.8 87.3

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

Table 4. U.S. Merchandise Trade with Canada by Surface Modes of Transportation

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Mode   February 2011 January 2012 February 2012 Percent Change January 2012 - February 2012 Percent Change February 2011 - 2012
All Surface Modes Imports 21,234 24,079 23,950 -0.5 12.8
Exports 18,717 20,056 21,489 7.1 14.8
Total 39,952 44,135 45,440 3.0 13.7
Truck Imports 10,039 10,985 11,193 1.9 11.5
Exports 14,402 15,435 16,124 4.5 12.0
Rail Imports 4,901 5,580 5,696 2.1 16.2
Exports 2,048 2,303 2,581 12.1 26.0
Pipeline Imports 5,536 6,700 6,015 -10.2 8.6
Exports 475 445 807 81.2 69.9

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/

NOTES: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding.   Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.  The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, and other transportation.  For additional detail, please refer to the "Data Fields" section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html

Table 5. Top 10 States Trading with Canada by All Surface Modes of Transportation

Ranked by February 2012 Surface Trade Value

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

State February 2011 February 2012 Percent Change February 2011-2012
Value Rank Value Rank
 Michigan 5,007 1 5,919 1 18.2
 Illinois 3,946 2 5,133 2 30.1
 Ohio 2,475 3 2,849 3 15.1
 California 2,364 5 2,645 4 11.9
 Texas 2,187 6 2,588 5 18.4
 New York 2,427 4 2,159 6 -11.1
 Washington 1,564 7 1,690 7 8.1
 Pennsylvania 1,540 8 1,683 8 9.3
 Minnesota 1,392 9 1,614 9 15.9
 Indiana 1,313 10 1,570 10 19.6

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

NOTES: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding.  Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 6. U.S. Merchandise Trade with Mexico by Surface Modes of Transportation

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Mode   February 2011 January 2012 February 2012 Percent Change January 2012 - February 2012 Percent Change February 2011 - 2012
All Surface Modes Imports 15,043 16,875 18,248 8.1 21.3
Exports 11,540 14,524 14,447 -0.5 25.2
Total 26,583 31,399 32,696 4.1 23.0
Truck Imports 12,268 14,295 14,894 4.2 21.4
Exports 9,125 11,431 11,367 -0.6 24.6
Rail Imports 2,350 2,173 2,972 36.7 26.5
Exports 1,700 2,259 2,170 -3.9 27.6
Pipeline Imports 18 20 18 -11.0 2.0
Exports 237 264 337 27.4 42.3

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

NOTES: Numbers might not add to totals due to rounding.   Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.  The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, and other transportation.  For additional detail, please refer to the "Data Fields" section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/programs/international/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html

Table 7. Top 10 States Trading with Mexico by All Surface Modes of Transportation

Ranked by February 2012 Surface Trade Value

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

State February 2011 February 2012 Percent Change February 2011-2012
Value Rank Value Rank
 Texas 9,077 1 11,741 1 29.3
 California 3,761 2 4,520 2 20.2
 Michigan 3,126 3 3,875 3 24.0
 Arizona 981 4 1,182 4 20.5
 Illinois 931 5 1,110 5 19.2
 Ohio 758 6 877 6 15.6
 Tennessee 547 7 725 7 32.5
 Indiana 493 8 622 8 26.2
 North Carolina 431 9 533 9 23.7
 Wisconsin 374 12 443 10 18.5

SOURCE: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

NOTE: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding

Table 8. Top Five Commodities Transported between the U.S. and Canada by All Surface Modes of Transportation, February 2012

(millions of dollars)

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Commodities Exports Imports Total
Vehicles Other than Railway 4,010 4,720 8,730
Oil and Gas 1,334 7,307 8,642
Computer-Related Machinery and Parts 3,443 1,583 5,027
Electrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts 1,747 578 2,326
Plastics 1,028 856 1,884

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Transportation, Research and Innovative Technology Administration, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, based on Transborder Freight Data, available at http://www.bts.gov/transborder/, as of March 20, 2012.

NOTE: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding.

Table 9. Top Five Commodities Transported between the U.S. and Mexico by All Surface Modes of Transportation, February 2012

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Commodities Exports Imports Total
Electrical Machinery; Equipment and Parts 2,500 4,125 6,625
Computer-Related Machinery and Parts 2,812 3,412 6,223
Vehicles Other than Railway 1,618 4,050 5,667
Plastics 1,100 309 1,409
Measuring and Testing Instruments 362 805 1,167

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Transportation, Research and Innovative Technology Administration,Bureau of TransportationStatistics, based on Transborder Freight Data, available at http://www.bts.gov/transborder/, as of March 13, 2012.

NOTE: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding.